With all the negative press around some retirement villages and real estate developers facing financial uncertainty, it is very appropriate to consider the financial security of your potential retirement accommodation provider. Whether Helena Valley Lifestyle Village is financially secure is a very good question that should be asked if you’re considering a move into the village.

In short, the answer is “yes – very secure”, and this is for two main reasons. Firstly, the owner of the Village (and all National Lifestyle Villages) is Serenitas Communities which is a joint venture between GIC, the Singaporean Sovereign Wealth Fund and Tasman Capital, an Australian owned and focused private equity firm.

GIC is a long-term investor. The Lifestyle Village model (land lease communities) in Australia suits GIC’s investment strategy whilst providing homeowners in our community peace of mind with Serenitas’ secure financial backing. Secondly, besides the fact that Serenitas is extremely financially sound, our lease agreements ensure that no matter who owns the village, your security of tenure is protected. This means that if the village is ever sold, the new owners must agree to comply to all existing lease agreements and their terms. This was demonstrated in practice in June of last year, when Serenitas bought National Lifestyle Villages (NLV). Despite the change of ownership, the transition went very smoothly, and no residents were impacted.

There is further peace-of-mind knowing that Serenitas works closely with the Department of Consumer Protection to ensure that the interests of all NLV community residents (which include Helena Valley Lifestyle Villages homeowners), are safeguarded.

Finally, it’s also worth noting that Helena Valley Lifestyle Village is not a retirement village but rather a land lease community – and this is a very important distinction to note. Under the land lease model, residents directly own their own home, whereas under a retirement village, a resident would typically have a licence to occupy their unit or home.
Unfortunately, some retirement village operators in WA seek to use the term “lifestyle village” in their branding as a way of “piggy backing” off the strong following that NLV has developed over the past 17 years through its land lease community model.

Again, it is important to remember that retirement villages operate under completely different legislation to land lease communities and the retirement villages legislation has been cited as one of the main reasons for some recent retirement village insolvencies.

Typically, land lease communities such as Helena Valley Lifestyle Village are more focused around activities, shared community facilities with transparent financial arrangements. As such, a number of leading retirement industry commentators believe that land lease communities will be a larger sector than retirement villages within five years.

In any event you can rest assured knowing that if you move into the village you are in safe hands and if you would like further information, please contact us on 6298 0888, email at helenavalley@nlv.com.au or visit helenavalleylifestyle.com.au.

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Information in this article is true and correct as of 18 September 2019.

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